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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    Windows 7 Computer can't see or connect to other computers on network

    The computer in question is a Dell Vostro 1500 laptop. It started out running Windows Vista Basic. It was later (a few years ago) upgraded to Windows Vista Business. It was subsequently upgraded to Windows 7 Pro.

    The problem is that when connected to our wireless router, a Cisco Small Business RV 120W over the wireless network, I am unable to connect to other computers on the network running either Windows 7 (no Homegroups have been set up) or Windows XP Pro, with the exception of our file server which is running Windows Server 2003. However, when I disconnect from the router, and connect to our wireless access point (set up at the other end of the office to extend the wifi range) I am able to browse the network neighborhood and to connect to printers and shared folders without any problems. I am also able to browse the network neighborhood and connect to shared printers and folders when connected to the Cisco router via a wired Ethernet connection.

    The wifi access point (a LinkSys WAP54G) has it's own SSID, but uses the same WAP key as the main wifi network (to keep things simple as far as the initial connection to the wifi network is concerned.)

    The problem browsing the network when connected to the main wifi network occurs whether the laptop in question is in the normal room it's used it (a few rooms away from the room where the Cisco router is set up), or whether it's in the same room, within a few feet of said Cisco router. Yet, the laptop in question can browse the network and connect to shared printers and folders when connected to the wireless access point that is at the opposite end of our office (a dental office) from the laptop, with the resultant weaker wifi signal. Even with the weaker signal, I can still do all the normal network-related stuff when connected to the WAP.

    When the desired network resource (printers, etc.) is directly connected to the network (i.e., has its own IP address), I can connect to those printers and print to them with no troubles. Right now, the laptop in question is able to print to both our Brother laser printer (serving as its own print server via Ethernet), as well as a wifi-enabled inkjet photo printer, even when connected to the Cisco router via its wifi connection.

    The only other pertinent fact I can think of is that the SSID for the primary and secondary networks are similar in name. The main wifi network's SSID is in the form of: JXXXXN_NET, and the secondary wifi network's SSID is in the form of: JXXXXN2_NET.

    Any suggestions for things I may have missed, or steps to take are welcome.

    I had thought about the possibility of rebooting the Cisco, but have not done that yet, as we're in the middle of our day here, and I will have to wait until no one is using the network to reboot the router.

    Finally, this computer *has* been able to browse said wifi network in the past. It is just unable to do so now.
    -=> Carroll McAllister <=-

    Coming to you "almost live" from Searcy, Arkansas

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  3. #2
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Hi Carroll, What errors are given when you try to connect ? Read this. Make an Image and post it.pdf
    This may also help. File sharing.pdf
    George's PC Specs. / Laptop. Desktop.

  4. #3
    Star Lounger
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    I've already reviewed the steps in your File sharing article you linked to, just to make sure I wasn't missing something. I know how to share files, folders, and printers on a network. That's not the issue. The issue is with the computer in question being able to see other computers (and by association - connect to them) over the network. Of course, since my previous post, things have changed a bit on the laptop in question.
    Network Neighborhood - before connecting.JPG

    The image above is what I now see when browsing the network over the primary wifi connection. It does see *some* of the computers on the network, but not all of them. I was able to connect to shared printers on the computers that are visible in that image.

    When connected to the secondary wifi connection (our wireless access point), I see the following image when browsing the network neighborhood.
    Network Neighborhood - 2nd Wifi.JPG

    As you can see, I can see many more computers in the network neighborhood when connected to the secondary wifi network (over the wireless access point.)

    Finally, in the image below, you can see that I was able to see (and connect to) a shared label printer on another computer on the network over the secondary wifi connection.

    Network Neighborhood - 2nd Wifi - label printer.JPG

    I didn't get any screen shots, but I *was* able to connect to at least one shared printer over the primary wifi connection on one of the few computers that showed up over that connection, and was able to print to it.

    So, I'm flumoxed. ;-)
    -=> Carroll McAllister <=-

    Coming to you "almost live" from Searcy, Arkansas

  5. #4
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    Is this a domain or workgroup?

    Did it work OK when it was running Vista Business?

    Is SP1 for Windows 7 installed?

    Do you have any networking restrictions configured in the Cisco router?
    Joe

  6. #5
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Have you tried rebooting yet?
    George's PC Specs. / Laptop. Desktop.

  7. #6
    Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeP517 View Post
    Is this a domain or workgroup?

    Did it work OK when it was running Vista Business?

    Is SP1 for Windows 7 installed?

    Do you have any networking restrictions configured in the Cisco router?
    Joe
    It is a workgroup. Although we've got the option to run Active Directory, I haven't made that leap yet, since it's such a small (10 user) network.

    It worked ok when running Vista Business, but that was long before we acquired the Cisco router.

    It is running Windows 7 Pro SP1 (I figured it was, but I just checked to make sure.)
    -=> Carroll McAllister <=-

    Coming to you "almost live" from Searcy, Arkansas

  8. #7
    Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roderunner View Post
    Have you tried rebooting yet?
    Drat! I *knew* there was something I intended to do before I left the office last night! Now, I'll have to wait until around lunch time today to reboot the router! Drat again! :-(
    -=> Carroll McAllister <=-

    Coming to you "almost live" from Searcy, Arkansas

  9. #8
    Star Lounger
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    I'm a little late in reporting the results of the router re-boot, but that did the trick. I don't know why browsing the network neighborhood from the wireless access point would work, yet browsing it from the main router didn't, but the re-boot of the router appears to have corrected whatever problem there was.
    -=> Carroll McAllister <=-

    Coming to you "almost live" from Searcy, Arkansas

  10. #9
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Hope it lasts.
    George's PC Specs. / Laptop. Desktop.

  11. #10
    Star Lounger
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    We will see! :-)
    -=> Carroll McAllister <=-

    Coming to you "almost live" from Searcy, Arkansas

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